Things are heating up in the DIII tournament with the eight-team bracket filling up and first-round games slated to begin on May 21. Three Ringor-wearing programs have already won hard-earned spots in the tournament. Defending DIII champs, Tufts, and perennial powerhouses, Linfield and Salisbury, have each found themselves among the eight best in the country. Here’s a look at how they got there.

Linfield College Softball 2015

Following a 10-2 win on May 16 against the IIAC’s Central College in the NCAA Super Regionals, Linfield found themselves once again in the DIII tournament. The Wildcats hope to extend their season when they take on Alfred University on May 21 in Salem, VA. Montana McNeally picked up the final win against Central, giving her a 28-6 record and 1.40 ERA for the season. Danielle Duman helped out with the offense, driving in six runs for the convincing win, giving her a team-leading 64 RBIs for the season and helping her solid .336 batting average.

Linfield faces a tough challenge in Alfred University who comes into the tournament at 40-5. We’re wishing the Wildcats the best as they represent the great state of Oregon in the DIII’s!

Tufts University Softball 2015

The defending DIII softball champs are back again! Tufts comes into the tournament following a 6-1 win over WPI in the Super Regionals. The Jumbos are also carrying with them an undefeated, 46-0 record. Breaking down the numbers for the Jumbos, it’s easy to see how they took their schedule by storm this season. Averaging nearly seven runs a game with a team batting average of .351 and an on base percentage of .421 you can see that their tactical, efficient offense lead the way to their perfect record.

But offense wasn’t the whole story. Continuing what could amount to a victory lap, Senior pitcher Allyson Fournier heads into the tournament with 30 wins and a 0.12 ERA. The Alma College Scots are up for the biggest challenge of their season as they step up against the Tufts Jumbos in search of a three-peat national championship! The two teams face off on May 21, in Salem, VA.

Salisbury University Softball 2015

Maryland’s Salisbury University Seagulls are no strangers to the DIII tournament either. The Seagulls were last season’s runner-ups and finished in the #2 spot in 2005 as well. This season Salisbury enters the tournament with a 35-5 record.

Lead by the strong bats of Kim Dorsey (.450/131 AB), Paige Knussman (.448/125 AB) and Annah Brittingham (.424 / 99 AB) the Gulls’ offense is the answer to the stellar pitching we’ve seen from other teams entering the tournament. But with 26 wins and a 1.23 ERA, pitcher Rachel Johnson can allow the offense to take a break every now and then, while she delivers from the mound. The Seagulls start the tournament against DePauw on May 21, in Salem, VA.

Check back in later this month for updates on the DIII tournament and how some of our favorite teams are doing. Good luck to the Salisbury Seagulls, Linfield Wildcats and the Tufts Jumbos! And with the teams on opposite sides of the brackets we have our fingers crossed for an all-Ringor cleats final!.

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